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Old 11-01-2018, 12:48 AM   #1
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Default I did it! Officially off the fence!

After over a year of fretting on whattype of van to purchase, I'm the proud owner of a used 2017 Transit Passenger (grandchildren) low roof (I'm very short) van that fits in my garage.

Please give me your recommendations for the following items that I plan to add to my camper van. Since I really want to keep it in my garage, I can't add anything on top of the van:

1. Which portable electric refrigeration/freezer?
2. Which memory foam folding mattress or stick with a roll up type?
3. I made a compost toilet out of a TV stand...it is a bit bulky/heavy...will I be happier with a plastic camper type toilet...so many to choose from.
4. Which portable electric heater?
5. Which portable electric fans do you recommend?

6. Which lithium battery system...I'm leaning towards plug and play lithium system from Lithionics since I can easily add to it if needed.

Will be using a portable AC (I already purchased)

I appreciate your recommendation, I know personal preferences vary but, I value all opinions in helping me get off the fence with the above items.
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Old 11-01-2018, 10:14 AM   #2
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Congrats on climbing/jumping/falling from the fence.

How do you intend to use it?
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Old 11-01-2018, 03:49 PM   #3
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“How do you intend to use it?” is indeed a good question. It seems as a bag of stuff is what you need but how are you planning to deploy it. Is this supposed to be 12 VDC heater or 120 VAC heater, will it run on Li batteries or shore power. I think you need to paint your plan with much higher resolution to gain help. Plastic RV toilet doesn’t say what type, is it just a porta-potty?

I wish to see your composting toilet from a TV stand.

Lithionics kit in the bag of the other stuff is puzzling. Is portable AC the same as portable Inverter, will it be used to heat the van?, it could be good enough for Florida, your plan needs more details.
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Old 11-02-2018, 02:00 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver2017 View Post
Short trips...long weekends or up to two weeks.
Solo driveway camping, Walmart type accommodations, campgrounds, and only day trips with grandchildren.

The second row has three 3 point seat belts for the kids and/or dogs. The rest of the space is for hauling or camping items. Everything needs to be portable so I can use the van for a variety of uses.

I read a 2" memory foam mattress is easier to roll. My Bed is the second row three seater that I will make a board to extend the width...length...I'm fine.

The Plug and Play battery system is portable but, I plan to keep it in the van 24/7.
I'd do a google search for van builds and see what folks have done and how their equipment and builds will work for how you are gonna travel. Lots of different ways to skin this cat.

By all means, if you have a specific question about different ways of doing things or about equipment, ask away. It's pretty difficult for me, at least, to know exactly what will float your boat. Example, two week trip. Staying in one or two places or moving everyday. Campgrounds, hook ups or not?

We boondock 80-90% of the time with out shore power. Sometimes for a night or two or sometimes up to two weeks in one spot. We have equipped our van to facilitate our style, including portable solar.

You will likely do the same for your style. My/our trips range up to four months in length.
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Old 11-02-2018, 09:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
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I wish to see your composting toilet from a TV stand.
I made a compost toilet out of a small TV stand...but I'm thinking a smaller already made toilet will be easier to secure yet portable so, I purchased a Camco Premium Portable toilet...cheap from Walmart.

Bed & Bath have a Simons memory foam rollup mattress so, I bought that with a 20% coupon.

Looking for a portable fan and heater next.
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Old 11-02-2018, 10:31 PM   #6
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My compost toilet that I made out of a small TV stand...but I'm thinking a smaller already made cassette or compost one might be a better option and move the one I made to my shed.

Any thoughts on the Camco Premium Portable toilet?
I have no experience with Camco toilets, sorry. I installed the Thetford 402C cassette toilet in my van. The differences between a porta-potty or a cassette toilet are:

1. No provision for “black tank” venting like it is in most of cassettes.
2. Cassette is easy to remove; flush water system is permanent.
3. Most of cassettes have built in wheels.

If you are not planning do a conversion a regular porta-potty will do. See this review - https://www.pickatoilet.com/best-por...mping-toilets/
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Old 11-11-2018, 12:55 PM   #7
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Congratulations on your selection!

We are in our second year with a 2016 Express that we converted ourselves. We primarily take 2 - 4 day trips and stay in state or national forest campgrounds without hookups.
We chose a Dometic CFX65DZ for the portable fridge/freezer and love it. Works perfect for day trips and as a beer fridge on game days, as well.

We picked up a 3in memory foam mattress topper at Costco which is very comfortable; we also use it at home when not out exploring.

For the porta potty, we kept it basic since facilities are usually available; a camping toilet with WAG bags. We were also considering some disaster prep potential with this decision.

For batteries and charging, we have dual 155ah Vmax AGM batteries, one of which is housed in an ArcPak with built in charger, USB ports and 120v outlet. We have a 100w Renogy solar panel and mppt controller to charge everything or it can be plugged in to shore power if we stay someplace with hookups. I ran wiring for 12v receptacles and the battery gauge behind the driver's seat since the fridge is secured here while in transit/camping.

I have certainly learned a lot from people on this site as well as Expedition Portal, so have fun building a rig that works best for your needs.
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Old 11-11-2018, 02:50 PM   #8
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Thank you Jeff!

I purchased black pillowcases for the Reflectix window coverings I made. The pillowcases can be removed for washing and summer use.

I purchased:
Simmons Siesta 3" roll up memory foam mattress
Vornado VH 200 heater
Camco T 2.6 toilet
SunZero Blackout Panel (52"x63") two of them

Still researching for:
Refrigerator that runs on both AC/DC
Lithium power pack system...leaning towards Lithionics Plug and Play

Looking for recommendations for best:
12V vacuum cleaner
12V heater
12V Fan
12V lighting
Full length screen for van's sliding and cargo doors

Do I want to cover my van's carpet with an area rug, cargo rubber mat or just use it and replace if needed?
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